Scotland – Europe’s Blockchain Capital

The objective of our Digital Nation Action Plan is to identify the individual entrepreneurs visions for how to achieve a world leading Scottish digital nation, and aggregate these into one overall action plan.

On The Crypto Standard podcast they interview Nick Jones of Zumo, exploring the details of their exciting venture pioneering a cryptocurrency payments app.

Concluding the interview Jordan highlights how Wyoming is becoming a crypto and blockchain global hub, and asks if Scotland could replicate a similar success.

Nick believes this is entirely doable, given how Scotland is a small, relatively cash rich country with highly educated people, and with many pressing social inequality issues to address could act as an incredible ‘sandbox’ for cultivating innovative applications of the technology that leverage Scotland’s deep legacy of financial expertise.

To crystallize a strategy to unify Scotland’s many different initiatives and assets around a single vision of making Scotland the Blockchain Capital of Europe, Nick quantifies the end result through stating key metrics such as having 10 of the top 50 startups, three relevant university courses and a £500m venture fund for supporting the ecosystem.

“Weak on Blockchain”

The nature of the challenge is very succinctly captured by Andrew Noble of Par Equity in this TechCrunch artlcle. While reporting on the general success of Scotland’s startup scene in his analysis he comments that Scotland is “weak on Blockchain”.

He’s not wrong. Scotland has a handful of great Blockchain startups like Zumo, Siccar and Appii, but to Nick’s point we’re well short of how many there should be, there’s no real funding initiatives to address this and adoption in key ‘big lever’ sectors like Government is non existent. Therefore the essence of our Action Plan should be to address exactly this.

A keystone foundation is regulation and legislation, the right approach could either inhibit innovation or unlock an unparalleled scale of economic growth. As Coindesk reports a new German law could theoretically bring as much as €350 billion (~$425 billion) of institutional investment into their cryptocurrency market.

In this blog Bill Buchanan describes how countries should legislate a Blockchain Act, emulating pioneers like Liechtenstein, providing the legal framework to truly achieve a wholly digital nation.

Scaling Scotland’s Blockchain Ecosystem

Nick offers an ideal starting point for a Digital Nation Action Plan – A big audacious ambition and clear metrics for quantifying when it is achieved.

By incorporating the equivalent views from other Scottish tech entrepreneurs we can refine a detailed strategy and set of steps for truly realizing the goal of building a world leading Scottish digital nation.

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